Chapter 7.16


7.16.010    Declaration of intent.

7.16.020    Definitions.

7.16.030    Prohibition – Minors.

7.16.040    Prohibition – Responsible adults.

7.16.045    Exceptions.

7.16.050    Enforcement – Penalty.

7.16.010 Declaration of intent.

By enacting curfew regulations which apply to minors and parents of minors, the city council intends to preserve and promote the peace of the community, as well as the safety and welfare of minors, during the late night hours. The city council also recognizes that such regulations must protect the public interest without infringing upon certain fundamental rights of minors and their parents. This curfew measure is intended to reach a reasonable balance between said interests. Such balance is achieved by application of the principle that parental responsibility for the conduct of a minor is paramount to the exercise of regulatory authority by the city. Only in the absence of the exercise of parental authority over a minor will the enforcement of this curfew measure become necessary. (Ord. 235 § 1, 1997)

7.16.020 Definitions.

“Curfew hours” means the hours between 10:00 p.m. and 5:00 a.m. of the following day.

“Guardian” means (1) a person who, under court order, is the guardian of the person of a minor; or (2) a public or private agency with which the court has placed a minor.

“Minor” means any person under the age of 18.

“Parent” means a person who is a natural parent, adoptive parent, or stepparent of a minor.

“Public place” means a public place or any place open to the public or to which any member of the public has access including, but not limited to, any public right-of-way, public grounds, dedicated open or trail space, or any privately owned land that is unsupervised and from which the public is not expressly excluded under applicable trespass laws including, but not limited to, vacant lots, the parking lots and the common areas of schools, hospitals, apartment houses, office buildings, housing complexes, shopping centers, and malls.

“Responsible adult” means a parent, guardian, or adult person at least 21 years old having the responsibility for the care, custody, and control of the subject minor. (Ord. 417 § 1, 2010; Ord. 235 § 1, 1997)

7.16.030 Prohibition – Minors.

No minor shall be present in any public place during curfew hours. (Ord. 235 § 1, 1997)

7.16.040 Prohibition – Responsible adults.

No responsible adult shall knowingly permit, or knowingly by insufficient control allow, a minor to be present in any public place during curfew hours. (Ord. 235 § 1, 1997)

7.16.045 Exceptions.

The prohibitions described in SBMC 7.16.030 and 7.16.040 shall not apply to any minor who, in the alternative, is:

A. Accompanied by his or her responsible adult;

B. Engaged in or directly en route to or from an employment or educational activity;

C. Involved in any emergency;

D. Present at a public place abutting the minor’s residence;

E. Present at any privately owned building or structure generally committed to a business or trade which is open to and serving the public, or going to or from said privately owned building or structure without detour or stop;

F. Attending or directly going to or coming from an event or activity sponsored and conducted by a civic organization, the city or other public agency, a charitable organization, a religious entity, an accredited public or private school, or another similar entity or person that takes responsibility for the minor;

G. On an errand at the direction of the minor’s responsible adult without any detour or stop;

H. In a motor vehicle involved in interstate travel;

I. Legally emancipated pursuant to law;

J. Exercising rights protected by the First Amendment of the United States Constitution or Section 2 of Article 1 of the California Constitution, exercising said rights as a participant in an organized event which has been permitted under applicable provisions of this code, or going to or coming from activities involving an exercise of First Amendment rights;

K. Traveling without detour or delay between the minor’s residence and any activity listed in subsections A through J of this section, or between such activities. (Ord. 417 § 2, 2010; Ord. 235 § 1, 1997)

7.16.050 Enforcement – Penalty.

A. Before taking any enforcement action, the deputy sheriff shall determine the apparent offender’s age and reason for being in a public place or on the premises of the establishment during curfew hours. The deputy sheriff shall not issue a citation or make an arrest under this section unless the deputy sheriff reasonably believes an offense has occurred and, based on any responses and other circumstances, no defense under SBMC 7.16.045 is applicable.

B. Each violation of SBMC 7.16.030 or 7.16.040 constitutes a separate offense and may be prosecuted either as a misdemeanor or infraction as provided under SBMC Title 1. Minors shall be prosecuted in accordance with applicable juvenile court law and procedure. (Ord. 417 § 3, 2010; Ord. 235 § 1, 1997)


Prior legislation: 1987 Code §§ 6.12.010 and 6.12.020 and Ords. 47, 138 and 183.